Expenditure and receipts of social protection schemes and pension beneficiaries, 2021

During the COVID-19 epidemic in 2021, expenditure on social protection schemes went up

EUR 13.1 billion was spent on social protection schemes in Slovenia in 2021. Most of it was spent on old age and on sickness and health care. In the structure of receipts, the share of social contributions went up over the previous year.

  • 18 July 2023 at 10:30
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Total expenditure on social protection exceeded EUR 13 billion

EUR 13.1 billion was spent on social protection schemes in Slovenia in 2021, which is 6.9% more than in the previous year. The increase in total expenditure was marked the most by higher expenditure in the sickness and health care, old age, and unemployment functions.

A quarter of GDP for social protection

A quarter (25.1%) of GDP was spent on social protection, which is 0.9 of a percentage point less than in the previous year. Despite nominal growth of social protection expenditure in 2021, its share in GDP decreased mainly due to higher nominal growth of GDP.

The order of functions for which the largest share of GDP was spent (around 21%) was about the same as a year before, with slightly different shares. The order was old age (9.5%; 0.5 p.p. lower GDP share than in the previous year), sickness and health care (8.3%; 0.3 p.p. lower GDP share), family and children (1.9%; the same GDP share) and unemployment (1.7%; 0.1 p.p. higher GDP share).

Three quarters of all funds for social benefits spent on the old age function and the sickness and health care function

The greatest amount (EUR 4,971 million or 38.6% of total expenditure for social benefits) was spent on the elderly, namely the old age function. The old age function was followed by the sickness and health care function with EUR 4,352 million or a third of total expenditure. The third highest expenditure group was the family and children function with EUR 973 million, followed by unemployment and disability functions. In total, 8.2% was spent on the survivors, social exclusion not elsewhere classified and housing (subsidies for housing rent).

Notably higher shares for unemployment, sickness and health care and family and children functions

Compared to the previous year, expenditure grew for most functions: sickness and health care (by 7.1%), old age (by 5.9%), family and children (by 7.3%) and disability (by 11.4%). Expenditure for the unemployment function increased the most, namely by 14% at the annual level due to the COVID-19 intervention measures.

Social contributions the main source of funding for social protection programs

Social contributions amounted to EUR 8,721 million or 66.3% of receipts for social protection schemes. The largest part of those was social contributions of the insured persons (EUR 5,205 million or 39.6% in the whole structure of financing), followed by social contributions of the employers (EUR 3,516 million or 26.7%). The shares of both increased compared to the previous year (the share of social contributions of the employers by 1.7 p.p. and the share of social contributions of the insured persons by 3.2 p.p.).

Government contributions amounted to EUR 4,066 million in 2021, with their share in the structure of funding sources decreasing by 6 p.p. compared to the previous year.

More pension beneficiaries than a year ago

In Slovenia, there were 665,802 pension beneficiaries or 0.2% more than in the previous year. As regards individual pension categories, the number of beneficiaries of old age pensions increased over the previous year (by 1.1%), while the number of beneficiaries of disability pensions and survivors’ pensions decreased (by 7.7% and 0.5%, respectively).

Expenditure and receipts of social protection schemes, Slovenia
mio EUR
Expenditure – total1)12,24513,086
  social benefits12,04912,864
    cash social benefits7,9358,411
    social benefits in kind4,1144,453
  administration costs153158
  other expenditure4464
Receipts – total1)12,22913,153
  social contributions7,5188,721
    employers' social contributions3,0663,516
    social contributions by the protected persons4,4525,205
  general government contributions4,5124,066
  other receipts200367
1) Some totals do not add up due to rounding.
Expenditure for social benefits by social protection functions (risks), Slovenia
mio EUR%% of GDP1)mio EUR%% of GDP1)
  sickness/health care4,06233.78.64,35233.88.3
  old age4,69338.910.04,97138.69.5
  social exclusion not elsewhere classified4243.50.94273.30.8
1) Expenditure for social protection as percentage of GDP is calculated on the basis of the last available data on GDP (First Release; 31 August 2022; https://www.stat.si/StatWeb/en/news/Index/10525).
2) Some totals do not add up due to rounding.
Pension beneficiaries1), Slovenia
Pension beneficiaries
  of old age, disability and survivors' pension 2)664,409665,802
Beneficiaries by individual pension category
  old age558,224564,243
1) Data are in accordance with the European methodology ESSPROS.
2) Within this category the beneficiary is counted only once even if it can receive both right at the same time (so, if beneficiary receives the old age pension and widows' part, he/she is counted only within old age pension category). It is not the sum of individual pension categories as beneficiary can receive more than one pension.
3) Survivors' category includes family, widows' and part of widows' pensions.
Data on the number of pension beneficiaries represent an additional module within the ESSPROS methodology. For the module the same methodological rules apply as for the core system (especially concerning the old age function and classifying into a certain function of social protection or in this case a pension category), except that this module does not include all programs, but only those which relate to pensions, i.e. programs 5 to 18. Data refers to December.

It should also be mentioned that the figures shown in this module do not correspond to the national pension categories because the coverage here is broader and there are other methodological features.

Final and more detailed data will be available in November 2023.
When making use of the data and information of the Statistical Office of the Republic of Slovenia, always add: "Source: SURS". More: Copyright.